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Authored by Cory Lee

You may remember Cory Lee from his inspiring traveler interview where he spoke about traveling the world from his wheelchair. An expert on accessible travel, today Cory writes about his experience in Salzburg, Austria.  

After spending a week in Munich, I was itching to get out of the city and do a day trip. I had dreamed of visiting Neuschwanstein Castle (the famous castle that inspired Cinderella’s Castle at Walt Disney World), and as it’s only a couple hours train ride from Munich, mom and I thought that would be a great idea. But after speaking with a receptionist at the train station, she informed us that there was not a wheelchair accessible train which serviced Neuschwanstein.

While fairly disappointed, instead of letting that ruin our day, we just asked where could we go which was accessible. Without any hesitation, she said Salzburg, Austria. Not knowing anything about Salzburg, other than the fact that The Sound of Music was filmed there, we hopped on the train immediately. After an hour and a half of traveling through the beautiful countryside, we arrived and were ready to explore Salzburg in a wheelchair.

Salzburg: A Breathtaking (& Accessible) Adventure


Mirabell Palace and Gardens – exploring Salzburg in a wheelchair.


The Salzburg train station is just a short walk (well, “roll” in my case) from the downtown area with all of the attractions so we were relieved that we didn’t have to try to find a wheelchair accessible taxi.

We started our day by taking in the sights of the Salzach River, which runs right through the town with a bridge over it separating the two sides of the city. From here, you can see how beautiful Salzburg is, with Hohensalzburg Fortress hovering high above as a landmark.

We started wandering aimlessly, something I usually hate doing as I love a good concrete plan, but the tranquility of Salzburg soothed my punctilious personality. Soon, we were at Mirabell Palace and Gardens.

While we didn’t go inside the palace, the gardens are worthy enough to explore on their own. As a big Sound of Music fan, I was kind of freaking out at the fact that I was in the same gardens where the famous “Do Re Mi” song was filmed. The Mirabell Gardens left me in awe and it was the perfect place to start our day in Salzburg.


Photo CC by Guillaume


The next place that we stumbled upon was the Getreidegasse. This is the main street in Salzburg and is composed of many shops, restaurants, and even Mozart’s Birthplace, a yellow building that you couldn’t possibly miss due to the hundreds of people in front of it taking pictures.

We went to the desk to see if the tour of the house was accessible, but unfortunately it was not. Even though we couldn’t go inside the house, it was still cool to see the house and we got to try Mozartkugeln.

Mozartkugeln is a candy filled with a hazelnut cream center and then surrounded by pistachio marzipan filling and chocolate. It is DELICIOUS (!!!!) and you can find them all over Salzburg.

Salzburg Cathedral

Next, after eating some amazing Wiener Schnitzel and shopping on the Getreidegasse, we made our way to the Salzburg Cathedral. This cathedral is huge and is completely wheelchair accessible. There is a ramp outside to get into the building and once inside, there is an elevator to go to the second floor with.

You usually don’t find such accessibility in old cathedrals like this, but it has been rebuilt three times since its inception in 767. There have been two fires and one bomb attack, but you could never tell it by looking at it. Everything about the cathedral is stunningly beautiful.

Salzburg Cathedral

Photo CC by cdschock

Hohensalzburg Fortress

Our last stop was the Hohensalzburg Fortress. This place is the oldest fully preserved fortress in central Europe and is at the top of a huge hill. You can walk to the top, but the funicular railway is fully wheelchair accessible and offers some spectacular views of the city on your way up.

It’s a short ride to the top and once you’re there it’s breathtaking. The views over the city of Salzburg were unlike anything I have seen before. You can see the Alps on one side and the city on the other.

It is not accessible to go inside the fortress, but with the spectacular views I didn’t care. We spent a while soaking it all in before getting back on the funicular and making our way down to the train station to head back to Munich.

Salzburg was a totally unexpected trip for me, but ended up being one of my favorite destinations. Salzburg is small enough for a day trip, but so beautiful that I would go back and stay for a month (but I’d settle for just a week if you’re paying).

So, whether you are a Sound of Music fan or not, go visit Salzburg! You’ll love it.

Cory is the founder of Curb Free with Cory Lee, a travel blog devoted to sharing the world from a wheelchair user’s perspective. He has been in a wheelchair due to Muscular Dystrophy since his diagnosis at the age of three, but has never let his wheels hold him back from doing anything, including traveling. Cory aims to inspire both people with disabilities and people without disabilities to get out of their comfort zone and see the world.

You can find Cory on Facebook and Twitter.


  1. I’m so glad you liked! I just recently went back to Salzburg and I simply love it there :)
    I mean what’s not to love about it right!
    The Mozartkugeln are delicious – they sell it all over Austria, but they are pretty expensive in Salzburg :S Just make sure you go to any supermarket and get them there – it’ll save you a fortune!
    safe travels!

    • Thanks Viki! I have to get to Slazburg again soon myself. I traveled during winter a few years ago, and while the snow was magical I would love to see the city during summer.

      Will make sure I head to a supermarket for the Mozartkugeln. Thanks for the tip!

  2. Fabulous to hear that your trip to Salzburg was a pleasant and comfortable one! I ended up staying a year, and it really is as beautiful as the postcards. I’ve blogged about it a lot, but you’ve given a great overview of a weekend stay there!

    • Wow how fantastic to have stayed for so long! Salzburg is definitely one of those cities you can just keep going back to – I don’t think it’s charm could ever wear thin. Will head on over to your blog to check out some of your posts – thanks Chez!

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